Picture Perfect

By Tiffany Tolman

When Sister Shauna Stephenson was young, she spent countless hours transporting bulky camera equipment from shoot to shoot for her father, an amateur photographer. After all that hard work, she vowed she would only be a casual “point and click” photographer when she grew up.

But all that changed when her husband, Bob, unexpectedly passed away at age 51, leaving Sister Stephenson with a son on a mission, a teenage daughter at home, and a need to find something to do. Recalling a photography convention she had attended some years earlier with her father, Sister Stephenson revisited the possibility of photography. The idea stuck, and after a couple years of training, Sister Stephenson moved from Texas to St. George, Utah, to open her own photography business.

Several years later, her children now grown, Sister Stephenson began to explore mission opportunities. Since she still had her business to maintain and a beloved pet to care for, moving away for a full-time mission wasn’t an option. But she didn’t know if serving in a family history center or a bishop’s storehouse would be the best fit for her. So, she headed to ChurchofJesusChrist.org toexplore mission opportunities.

What she discovered was an opportunity she had never considered—a Church-service mission as a photographer for the Church.

Sister Stephenson immediately talked with her bishop about this opportunity to serve. After some research, some paperwork, and approval from headquarters in Salt Lake City for this specialized assignment, she got to work.

Now Sister Stephenson is serving a two-year Church-service mission from her home in St. George, Utah. Her varied responsibilities include providing general photos for ChurchofJesusChrist.org and other Church publications as well as photographing specific events in her area.

For Sister Stephenson, this is a perfect opportunity to use her skills to further the work of the Lord. Every time she prepares to serve in her calling, she says a prayer that she will find the right focus, capture the right image, and share her testimony through her lens. Her images have been used in many Church publications, including articles on ChurchofJesusChrist.org and General Authority posts on social media. And she couldn’t be more thrilled to share her unique talents as a Church-service missionary.

She looks forward to someday serving a full-time mission for the Church. But for now, Sister Stephenson has found the mission for her—and it’s picture perfect.

Learn how you can use your unique talents and skills to serve as a Church-service missionary by exploring opportunities today.